Life as an ordinand

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The weekly pattern of life for ordinands

During term, we have a set weekly timetable that helps us pray, grow and learn together. The outline below shows what you can expect as an ordinand in a typical Ridley week:

Monday to Friday


  • Morning prayer (with the whole community in chapel, in staircase groups or Emmaus Journey Groups)
  • Learning – see Academic Formation for the key topics covered
  • Lunch with the rest of the community in the dining room


  • Afternoon learning
  • On Monday evenings Spice, the Ridley spouses group meets, and on Thursday evenings the whole community gathers for College Communion. Every other evening students from across the Cambridge Theological Federation gather for ecumenical worship.

Saturday and Sunday

Saturday is your day off and Sunday is when you engage in ministry and mission activities in your parish attachments.

A community that cares for every ordinand

Being male or female, single or married, with or without children within any mixed community can each present its own challenges as well as its own opportunities. Explore the tabs below for a sense of how Ridley cares for every ordinand and aims to provide for specific needs.

Single students

Single students

To some, the idea of returning to study as a single student can feel strange – like a university undergraduate, you live in on-site accommodation, but at the same time it's a very different situation from one that a first-time student would find themselves in. You will be studying alongside men and women from across the age spectrum, and many already have substantial careers and life histories behind them.

If there is one key aspect to life at Ridley as a single student, it's this: there is space to be yourself and find your own level in what will inevitably be a new environment.

Every year many informal groups arise from mutual interests - whether it be keep-fit sessions, guitar jamming, watching films, or just cooking for one another. There is a genuine culture of care at Ridley, and this is particularly noticeable between married and single students – married students will often make their study bedrooms available for guests of single students to stay in at the weekends.

Married ordinands

Married ordinands

Families of married students are integral to the life of the community. We positively encourage spouses to come with prospective students to our open days – it’s an ideal opportunity for you as a couple to explore your vocation to ministry.

If you are married and considering coming to train at Ridley, you can be assured that your spouse will have full opportunity to be involved as much as he or she would like to be involved in life at Ridley.

And likewise, if you have children, they will be very much embraced as part of the community. University and Federation lectures continue through half-term, but Ridley staff are sensitive to the needs of the family, and do seek to be more flexible during this time wherever possible.

See Families at Ridley for more information on life in college as a spouse or child of an ordinand.